Skip to main content
5:30 pm
the game. >> great. >> and so everybody turns out. >> thanks for joining us. i'm cheryl tonight on "world news," a daughter is free. the american hiker in the arms of her mother. out of prison in iran and speaking, forced to leave her fiance and friend behind. and that crisis on a new tape. the massive california gas explosion. what witnesses thought had happened. a cough syrup crackdown. dr. richard besser explores the way kids are using cough medicine to get high. and what a special delivery. a baby girl, just born to one of the trapped miners in chile. the name they gave her says so much. good evening. for 410 days, a 32-year-old american woman was imprisoned in
5:31 pm
iran. a hiker charged as a spy while her mother, nora, waited and prayed. well, tonight, sarah shourd is coming home, free. amid questions about her health, and the fate of the young americans left behind. one of them, her fiance. our jim sciutto has traveled to iran eight times and he's been following the hikers' story from the start. jim? >> reporter: well, diane, her detention became a powerful symbol of the wider standoff between the u.s. and iran, and after several false starts and doubts up to the very last minute, she finally has her freedom. for sarah shourd, 14 months and two birthdays behind bars ended with a joyful reunion with her mother. earlier, she left the tehran prison where she'd been held in solitary confinement for the spotlight and a flight to the persian gulf nation of oman. >> every innocent person in prison deserves the same support that i've received. but i -- i'm very humbled, the more i learn about what people
5:32 pm
have done for me, what governments have done for me, the more i feel humbled. >> reporter: she was freed for health reasons after discovering a lump in her breast. but not until half a million dollars in bail was paid, which officials insist did not come from the u.s. government. she's leaving behind fellow americans josh fattal and shane bauer, who became her fiance in prison. shourd's mother said in a statement today, "i'm going to make sure she now gets the care and attention she needs," adding, "i can only imagine how bittersweet her freedom must be. leaving shane and josh behind." bittersweet for the other families, as well. we reached the fattals at home in philadelphia. >> this house is waiting for josh. >> we profoundly share in the joy of the shourd family and we want nothing more than to have that for our families, as well.
5:33 pm
>> reporter: tonight, tehran's prosecutor offered little hope for the other two, saying they will now be tried for spying. this "newsweek" reporter, who was held in the same prison last year, said shourd herself will likely be leaving with her own chilling warning. >> they tell you what you should do, what you should say, what you shouldn't say. the revolutionary guards, they have agents all around the world, and they can always harm you. >> reporter: shourd is very aware they can also harm her two friends who now appear headed for a court run by iran's feared revolutionary guards. u.s. officials say, however, diane, that shourd will not be returning to iran for any trial. >> all right, jim sciutto, our thanks to you. and back here at home, the latest on that deadly natural gas explosion in california, which incinerated 40 houses. tonight, new tape of that moment, and the harrowing moments after, from neal karlinsky. >> reporter: the moment of the blast captured on a gas station's surveillance camera shows such a large explosion, it's no wonder first responders
5:34 pm
thought it was a plane crash. >> there's a plane down, we're getting multiple responses started. >> it appears we have a plane down in the neighborhood. >> reporter: in call after call, there are two constants amidst the chaos that are a firefighter's nightmare -- the fire is burning unusually hot. >> we're trying to get close. we have extreme heat. >> we've got major heat. we're triying to move people out of these homes right now. >> reporter: and all of the hydrants are dry. >> we have no water in this hydrant. we think we've got a broken water main down here. >> it's a sinking feeling. to say the least. because you count on that water being there. and if there was ever a time when you needed it, it was there. >> reporter: captain bill forester was one of the first to the fire was so big, even g i fire was so big, even >> it was like they took a sat urn-five rocket and fip tipped it upside down. at the blastoff, probably 100-foot flame lengths. it sounded kind of like a jet
5:35 pm
engine. a high pitched screaming sound. >> reporter: some of the firefighters first thought it was a terrorist attack. most thought it was a plane crash. it would be a full 45 minutes before thalizly >> it does not appear that this is an aircraft down. it appears this is some sort of natual gxpsi >> reporter: chapel hill fire chief daniel jones says the sort of confusion faced in san bruno is normal, but on a massive scale. >> in major incidents like this, it's rare that you have accurate information to st when you arrive on-scene, you basically look to see what you have, and you make some assumptions. >> reporter: many of these men and women live in the community a fact they say made a tough job wo their fellow neighbors call them heroes, but nearly a week later, even these firefighters are still trying to come to grips with a disaster they never saw coming. neal karlinsky, abc news, san bruno, california. and in politics tonight, 49 days before the november elections, the last big primary
5:36 pm
day is under way. voters are showing up in seven states and washington, d.c., going to the polls. and, we keep hearing republicans are motivated, democrats a lot less. jon karl toured the polls today to see what he found. >> reporter: in delaware today, a hotly contested senate primary is sending unprecedented numbers of republicans to the polls. >> the career politicians need to go for awhile and we need to bring in some fresh people. >> well, i don't think washington is in touch with the normal people. >> reporter: and big turnout today for republicans in new hampshire's primary. >> i want to bring america back to the way america was. >> greatest concern is the direction our country is going in on terms of political stances and spending. >> reporter: it's the trend. already nine states have seen record high republican turnout for mid-term primaries. democrats, meanwhile, have seen record low turnout in 11 states. it's called the enthusiasm gap, and it's the reason democrats may lose control of congress. >> i think it's going to be
5:37 pm
very, very difficult in places where republicans have plausible candidates for the democrats to mobilize in the way that they were able to mobilize in 2008. >> reporter: put simply, republicans are more fired up about voting than democrats. according to an american university study of primary races so far, 4 million more republicans have voted this year than democrats. that's an astounding number, because until now, democrats had voted in larger numbers in every mid-term election season since the 1930s. it's also a dramatic change from two years ago, when barack obama was attracting large numbers of new voters looking for change. many of those voters are now staying home. the challenge for democrats is to try to recapture some of that energy that got barack obama elected president. but it's not happening yet, diane, and there are only seven weeks left until election day. >> all right, jon, thanks to you. and we want to tell everyone about some disturbing new evidence tonight about one aspect of violent crime in america.
5:38 pm
as we told you last night, the fbi says violent crime dropped last year. the number of rapes down more than 2.5%. but today, a number of women came forward to say they are rape victims, but their police department simply looked the other way, in case after case. pierre thomas on the searing testimony. >> reporter: sara reedy's story is going to make you angry. in 2004, sara was sexually assaulted during a robbery at the pennsylvania gas station where she worked. >> he pulled a gun out on me. he ordered me to give him oral sex at gun point. >> reporter: did you think he might kill you? >> yes, i did. >> reporter: you still find yourself crying? >> at times, yes. >> reporter: but when sara reported the crime to police, a detective accused her of lying about the assault and of robbing the gas station herself. >> within minutes of meeting him, he began accusing me. >> reporter: he even arrested you, right? >> yes. at times i feel it would have
5:39 pm
been easier to go through the assault than the false arrest. >> reporter: reedy told her story today at a congressional hearing examining whether the nation's police are failing to fully investigate sexual assaults against women. in recent years, some major police departments have reported such stunning declines in rapes, that the credibility of their numbers are now being questioned. in new orleans, a 37% decrease in rapes. in new york city, a 35.7% drop. and in baltimore, there has been an unbelievable 80% decline in rape since the early 1990s. it was all too good to be true. in baltimore, officers failed to even write reports and investigate 60% of cases where a victim reported rape. >> we are seeing chronic and systemic patterns of police refusing to accept cases for investigation. >> reporter: as for sara, police later discovered a serial rapist had been targeting women in her area. the charges against her were
5:40 pm
dropped. did you ever get an apology from the detective? >> never. >> reporter: pierre thomas, abc news, washington. and, now, we turn overseas to a reality check from the man in charge. the general now leading american men and women in afghanistan. nine years into the war, with 95,000 u.s. troops on the ground, general david petraeus sat down with our martha raddatz. and, in an exclusive interview, talked about the possibility the war will take years more to end. >> reporter: general david petraeus has visited dozens of combat outposts in his two-plus months here. >> you interdicting with ground forces? >> reporter: every visit confirms how tough it is to make progress in this increasingly bloody war. >> it's very difficult and sometimes seeming to be as slow as watching grass grow or paint dry. but nonetheless progress. >> reporter: there have been improvements in the afghan security forces, and petraeus says there have been a few
5:41 pm
places where the taliban has lost momentum. a few. >> our soldiers, your police and you will all be fighting shona by shona. >> reporter: this small outpost we visited is called jagahta. it has been hammered by the enemy so often, the soldiers call it "jagahta get outta here." >> last month alone, we took 42 rockets, 16 mortars. >> reporter: in fact, while we were there, petraeus watched real-time video from an f-16 that was tracking a group of suspicious men, soldiers feared were about to attack the outpost. >> what we have sought to do is to provide realistic expectations. >> reporter: for all the talk about beginning to withdraw forces next summer, almost everything we saw in our travels, and almost everything general petraeus told us, indicated success here will take a very long time. successful counterinsurgency campaigns can take nine or ten years. we've been in afghanistan
5:42 pm
nine years. >> it is just now that we have finally gotten the inputs right in afghanistan. >> reporter: so we're really near the beginning of that counterinsurgency clock? that success that could take nine to ten years. >> in some respects, yeah. in some respects. i'd say obviously what took place up until this point has been of enormous importance, but it is just at this point that we feel that we do have the organizations that we learned in iraq and from history are necessary. >> reporter: meaning that thinning out of troops could still begin in july, but if the current strategy remains, a significant number of u.s. forces could be here well into the next decade. martha raddatz, abc news, lowgar province, afghanistan. and still ahead on "world news," they call it robotripping. teenagers getting high on cough syrup. the vote today on whether cough medicine should be a prescription drug. and, the miners trapped for months, the special delivery giving them hope.
5:43 pm
at purina one, we want your dog to be as healthy as possible. so, we set out to discover the science in some of nature's best ingredients. we created purina one with smartblend. new, delicious shredded morsels and crunchy bites, with real meat, wholesome grains and antioxidants, for strong muscles, vital energy, a healthy immune system, and a real difference in your dog. purina one improved with smartblend. discover what one can do. [meow] desperate for nighttime heartburn relief? for many, nexium helps relieve heartburn symptoms caused by acid reflux disease. and for the majority of patients with prescription coverage for nexium, it can cost $30 or less per month. headache, diarrhea, and abdominal pain are possible side effects of nexium. other serious stomach conditions
5:44 pm
may still exist. ask your doctor if nexium can help relieve your heartburn symptoms. if you can't afford your medication, astrazeneca may be able to help. [ male announcer ] at ge capital, we're out there every day with clients like jetblue -- financing their fleet, sharing our expertise, and working with people who are changing the face of business in america. after 25 years in the aviation business, i kind of feel like if you're not having fun at what you do, then you've got the wrong job. my landing was better than yours. no, it wasn't. yes, it was. was not. yes, it was. what do you think? take one of the big ones out? nah. i know who works differently than many other allergy medications. hoo? omnaris. [ men ] omnaris -- to the nose! [ man ] did you know nasal symptoms like congestion can be caused by allergic inflammation? omnaris relieves your symptoms by fighting inflammation. side effects may include headache, nosebleed, and sore throat. [ inhales deeply ] i told my allergy symptoms to take a hike. omnaris. ask your doctor.
5:45 pm
battling nasal allergy symptoms? omnaris combats the cause. get omnaris for $11 at how smart is the new ford edge? well, it can show you the most fuel-efficient route to where you're going. it can find the best price on gas. show fuel prices. and now its v6 gets the best highway fuel economy in its class. say hello to the new ford edge. quite possibly the world's smartest crossover. just about every one of us has some of it in our medicine cabinet. we're talking about cough medicine. the drug enforcement agency has been concerned about teenagers taking large amounts of cough syrup to get high. robotripping, they call it. and it's been a grow problem. in fact, today, an fda panel
5:46 pm
considered whether cough medicine should be much harder to buy. here's dr. richard besser. >> reporter: they're all over youtube. videos that show teens engaging in what's called robotripping, or dexing. millions of teens are known to be abusing dxm, the active ingredient in many over the counter medicines. >> we've got a generation of young people who are choosing to abuse medicines. and that's the issue we've got to go after. >> reporter: for some, it's a cheap way to get high. in large doses, the drug can cause hallucinations, of the sensation of being drunk. but there can be real consequences. dxm can be a gateway to other drugs. can cause changes in vision, difficulty breathing, fast heartbeat. and in rare instances, death. last year, robotripping sent more than 8,000 people, mostly teens, to the marriage room. 21-year-old james hunt has been using dxm to get high since he was 17. why didn't you consider it a drug?
5:47 pm
>> you don't think about drugs being on the counter at walmart. you just walk in anywhere, like, in any city in the country, and get drugs. >> reporter: still, today, an fda advisory committee voted to keep the cough medicines available without a description, in keeping with the industry group position. the industry says the key is to educate parents with ads like these. >> do my parents know? yeah, right. i even get high in my room. >> they have no clue. >> reporter: the fda must still decide whether to accept today's recommendation of their panel to keep the medicines nonprescription. but it's very likely that they will. it looks like it will come down to parents preventing cough medicine abuse, not the federal government. >> so, they will, at this point, at least, not make them a prescription drug? >> reporter: that's right. >> i want to ask you about something else, because there is news today on a report you first gave us here and all of our viewers heard about with certain osteoporosis drugs, like
5:48 pm
fosamax, and unusual broken bones. what is new? >> reporter: as we reported, some people on these drugs have broken their thigh bones by doing as little as stepping off the curb. have a look at these x-rays. it's serious. those are real breaks. following our reports, the fda sent out notices to doctors around the country. today, an expert panel reviewed all of the evidence, the most extensive review to date, and concluded there is a link between using these drugs for long-term and these unusual breaks in the femur. in fact, they found that 94% of people who had these unusual breaks had been on this drug for an extensive period of time. and so, they said this needs to be taken seriously and issued recommendations. >> what is the recommendation? >> reporter: there are several. first, labeling has to change, so that patients are aware of this risk. and second, doctors need to report better. there needs to be a reporting system so they can learn from this. it's important people understand, though, that these drugs prevent far more fractures than they cause. there are things you can do. if you've been on these drugs for more than five years, talk
5:49 pm
to your doctor, see if you still need to stay on them. and if you have pain in your thigh, that can be a warning sign that your leg could be about to break. >> so, five years and pain in the thigh, and you can find more details about rich's original reporting on our website at and still ahead, is this any way to fly? the new airline seats, packing more people onto planes like this?
5:50 pm
5:51 pm
words alone aren't enough. my job is to listen to the needs and frustrations of the shrimpers and fishermen, hotel or restaurant workers who lost their jobs to the spill. i'm iris cross. bp has taken full responsibility for the clean up in the gulf and that includes keeping you informed. our job is to listen and find ways to help. that means working with communities. restoring the jobs, tourist beaches, and businesses impacted by the spill. we've paid over $400 million in claims and set up a $20 billion independently-run claims fund to cover lost income until people impacted can get back to work. and our efforts aren't coming at tax-payer expense. i know people are wondering-- now that the well is capped,
5:52 pm
is bp gonna meet its commitments? i was born in new orleans. my family still lives here. i'm gonna be here until we make this right. nothing beats prevacid®24hr. just one pill helps keep you heartburn free for a full 24 hours. prevent the acid that causes frequent heartburn with prevacid®24hr, all day, all night. nothing works better. and now, this is not what airline passengers want to hear. introducing the sky rider. a stripped down seat that would let airlines pack more people onto planes. it's more like a saddle with arm rests than a seat. rows would be just 23 inches apart, as opposed to the average of 32 inches now. it would allow some 737s to carry 220 people, that's 50 more than today. an equipment company is showing them at a trade show. they still need faa approval.
5:53 pm
and, we continue to watch with the forecasters, hurricane igor, very closely tonight. winds, 145 miles per hour. and that's category 4. it is heading toward bermuda, and, look at the images from space. an astronaut aboard the space station told us the storm is putting on quite a show. >> absolutely fantastic. the view. we could see the water right through -- the atlantic ocean, right down through the eye. and it was spectacular. and it really just takes your breath away. >> amazing, indeed. and, a voice of christmas has died. >> rudolph, with your nose so bright -- won't you guide my sleigh tonight? >> it will be an honor, sir. >> reporter: how many kids have heard that over the years? billie mae richards had the title role in "rudolph the red nosed reindeer," a television
5:54 pm
classic since 1964. "what better legacy can you leave than a show that everybody loves," she once said. billie mae richards was 89 years old. and still ahead, why those miners trapped for more than five weeks had reason to celebrate today. for broccoli, say one. for toys, say two. toys ! the system can't process your response at this time. what ? please call back between 8 and 5 central standard time. he's in control. goodbye. even kids know it's wrong to give someone the run around. at ally bank you never have to deal with an endless automated system. you can talk to a real person 24/7. it's just the right thing to do. key lime pie, pineapple upside down cake. no, i've actually lost weight... [ female announcer ] over 30 delicious flavors at around 100 calories each. [ wife ] babe... i gotta go. [ female announcer ] yoplait, it is so good.
5:55 pm
i gotta go. copd doesn't just make it hard to breathe... it makes it hard to do a lot of things. and i'm a guy who likes to go exploring ... get my hands dirty... and try new things. so i asked my doctor if spiriva could help me breathe better. spiriva is the only once-daily inhaled maintenance treatment for both forms of copd... which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. spiriva keeps my airways open... to help me breathe better for a full 24 hours. and it's not a steroid. spiriva does not replace fast acting inhalers for sudden symptoms. stop taking spiriva and call your doctor right away if your breathing suddenly worsens, your throat or tongue swells, you get hives, have vision changes or eye pain... or have problems passing urine. tell your doctor if you have glaucoma, problems passing urine or an enlarged prostate... as these may worsen with spiriva. also discuss the medicines you take... even eye drops. side effects include dry mouth, constipation and trouble passing urine. i'm glad i'm taking spiriva everyday because breathing better is just better. ask your doctor if once-daily spiriva is right for you.
5:56 pm
ever seen anything likeme neither. it's beneful incredibites. uh-huh! it's just the way you like it-- made with wholesome grains, real beef, even carrots and peas. you love the smaller-size, easy-to-chew kibbles, and i love the carbohydrates for energy and protein for muscles. whoa! wait for me! ha-ha. you only think you're getting spoiled. [ woman announcing ] beneful incredibites. another healthful, flavorful beneful.
5:57 pm
and finally, so, wha and finally, so, what do you do when you're trapped 2,000 feet underground, no way out for months and your wife goes into labor? jeffrey kofman, following the saga of those 33 trapped miners in chile, tells us they had reason to cheer. >> reporter: elizabeth was almost eight months pregnant when the mine collapsed, trapping her husband and 32 others. "i've been trying to remain calm," she said last week, "because it's not easy to be pregnant in a situation like this." families of most of the trapped miners can be found at what they call camp home each day, outside the mine gates. but from deep in the mine, elizabeth's husband sent her a message. she should stay at home, he said, not in the camp, because she is pregnant. but it is hard for anyone to relax, knowing that a loved one is trapped half a mile underground. there have been other touching stories here. just ask christina. a few months ago, she declined
5:58 pm
her boyfriend's offer of marriage. that's him, talking to their daughter. when he was found alive, christina reconsidered. "he said, okay, my love," she tells me. "as soon as i get out of here, we're going to get married." as for the pregnant mother, she gave birth to a daughter as her husband waited anxiously for the news deep inside the collapsed mine. they were going to call their baby carolina. instead, they're calling her esperanza. spanish for hope. jeffrey kofman, abc news, at the san jose mine, chile. >> welcome to esperanza. is -- this is probably one of the hardest things that i had to do. >> that is because he lives in the neighborhood destroy bid flames. firefighters who battled the san bruno infern yes. >> what happened when pg&e insurance money runs out? why customers might have to
5:59 pm
pay when a wildfire goes beyond worst case scenario. >> are sheriff deputies properly trained on tasers? what happened when we went looking for answers today. >> and there is a rusting rec center in the south bay with your video. you fix it. >> we're initially thinking a jet airplane went down. then, a second call came in, ways thinking it might be a terrorist thing. >> a fire fighter reflects on neighborhood fire storm that destroyed dozens of homes and its clear that they were as shocked and uncertain as the rest of us. >> and investigators are now beginning to interview witnesses and this may be months before they can determine what caused it.
disc Borrow a DVD of this show
info Stream Only
Uploaded by
TV Archive
on 9/15/2010